Main functions and tasks of the departments of the Research and Collections Directorate

FOI request reference: F0061595
Publication date: April 2020


I would like to ask about the main functions and tasks of the departments of the Research and Collections Directorate in TNA. What are the main tasks of each department: Collection Care, Research and Archive Sector Development?






The information below has been collated from a mixture of the departmental intranet pages and the most recent strategy documents issued by these departments.

Archives Sector Development (ASD):

Archives Sector Development is the main focus for The National Archives’ leadership of the archives sector and its responsibilities under the Royal Warrant of the Historical Manuscripts Commission (HMC). Its purpose is to ensure sustained or improved preservation of and access to the nation’s archive collections across the private, public and voluntary sectors.

Its teams work closely together and with other experts and specialists across TNA and the archives sector. Team members have regionally focussed and/or subject specialist roles.  TNA aspires to deliver excellent and cost-effective services and programmes that benefit archive services and their users, and support sustainable and relevant archives services in England. It is a lead partner in the Archives Services Accreditation scheme.

Collection Care:

The main functions and tasks of Collection Care are to ensure access to The National Archives’ collection through long-term preservation and display; to prolong the life of the collection through established and innovative programmes of environmental management, conservation treatment, and research initiatives; and to enhance the understanding of the collection through cross-disciplinary research and original ways of interacting with its contents.

Research and Academic Engagement (RAE):

Research and Academic Engagement is responsible for:

• Research strategy and priorities
• Conducting research
• Enabling research through advice and co-development
• Advising on funding opportunities
• Leading on TNA’s relationships with Higher Education Institutions and Independent Research Organisations and their Consortium
• Collaborative PhDs and doctoral training
• Internal research seminars
• Research and academic engagement communications including social media and newsletters
• Academic events
• Advising on research publication and Open Access
• Research Training
• Professional fellowships
• Research Forum